Saturday, January 28, 2012

Minestrone Soup - Olive Garden Style

I made this soup a couple of weeks ago for a Shabbat Celebration and froze the leftovers. I thawed it for last night's Shabbat meal and baked it in the oven. It was even better than the first time. This recipe is easy and every bit as good as Olive Garden's Minestrone soup.

I actually cooked my own white beans and froze the excess to use later in other recipes. I only used a bay leaf when I cooked the beans.  I did use canned Kidney beans (my last can) in this recipe. Again, soup is very forgiving when substituting ingredients.

    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1/2 cup minced white onions (about 1 small onion)
     1/4 cup chopped zucchini
     1/4 cup frozen cut Italian green beans (I used extra zucchini)
    1/4 cup minced celery (I used dehydrated)
     2 teaspoons minced garlic
     4 cups vegetable broth (do not substitute)
    1 (15 ounce)can red kidney beans , drained
    1 (15 ounce)can great northern beans , drained (I used homemade)
     1 /2 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes
    1/2 cup carrots , julienned or shredded
     2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley (I used dried)
    1 teaspoons dried oregano
    1 teaspoons salt 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1/2 teaspoon dried basil
    1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
    1 1/2 cups hot water
    3 cups fresh baby spinach
    1/3 cup small shell pasta (I used macaroni)


Heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot.

Saute onion, celery, garlic, green beans, and zucchini in the oil for 5 minutes or until onions begin to turn translucent.

Add vegetable broth to pot, plus drained tomatoes, beans, carrot, hot water, and spices.

Bring soup to a boil, then and allow to simmer for 20 minutes.

Add spinach leaves and pasta and cook for an additional 20 minutes or until desired consistency.

Makes about eight 1 1/2 cup servings.

Number of Servings: 8

Shabbat Shalom !

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